Human Settlements provided dignified homes and empowerment in 2020/2021 FY
During the 20/21 financial year, the Western Cape Department of Human Settlements (WCDoHS) ensured that residents could access dignified housing opportunities, while also empowering various contractors and creating a number of job opportunities.
While presenting its Annual Report (AR) for the 20/21 financial year before the Western Cape Standing Committee on Human Settlements in the Western Cape Provincial Parliament (WCPP) today, the WCDoHS highlighted that it spent its budget on 14% of women contractors against a target of 10% and empowered more than 5% of youth contractors against a target of 4%. In addition to this, 937 job opportunities were created against a target of 800 were also created.
During the period under review, we unfortunately could only train 56 young people against a target of 150. This is largely due to the impact of the COVID-19 regulations as contact engagements could not occur. Our training is primarily practical in nature and needs in-person interaction. We look forward to this being rectified and improved in the year ahead as our response to COVID-19 is normalised.
This achievement and investment clearly demonstrates how aggressive and deliberate we’ve been in our plan with the aim to empower our people, whilst also creating much-needed job and economic opportunities. More than 67% of our Human Settlement Development Grant (HSDG) was spent on Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMME’s), with a particular focus on youth and women.
12 764 housing opportunities against a target of 14 853 have been afforded to deserving and qualifying beneficiaries. In addition to this, we were able to empower our people by making them owners of their properties with the transfer of 6 352 title deeds against a target of 8 110. This is significant, as we regard ownership as true empowerment.
Areas of under-performance are due to factors such as land invasions, gangsterism (where contractors and workers were either intimidated or extortion attempts were made) and the lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in delays in the construction of units and servicing of sites. The transfer of land parcels from other spheres of government and beneficiaries either leasing or selling their Breaking New Ground (BNG) homes some are factors as to why title deeds cannot be handed over.
We continue to incorporate innovative solutions in construction, and this is why the exploration of sustainable building technologies (SBT) initiatives are being utilised. Amongst others, these include water, electricity and sanitation saving mechanisms, as well as using an environmentally friendly block, termed hebel, as an alternative to the standard brick. This has resulted in the construction of 1 035 housing units against a target of 1 000.
We continue to be efficient in settling invoices, with 98% of suppliers and service providers being paid within 30 days.
We acknowledge the areas where we’ve fallen short, and processes are underway to address these. We’re also building on further strengthening the programmes where we’ve either achieved or exceeded our targets, as this will assist in improving the lives of more people in our province.
We remain committed to accelerating human settlement delivery, while promoting social inclusion through the development of integrated, resilient, safe and sustainable human settlements in an open opportunity society.
Spokesperson for Minister Tertuis Simmers
Tel: 021 483 3397
Mobile: 082 721 3362
Director Communication & Stakeholder Relations
Tell: 021 483 2868
Mobile: 083 263 1720